Written By: Stephen King

Narrated By: Mare Winningham

Date: October 2006

Duration: 19 hours 22 minutes


*Now an Apple TV+ limited series starring Julianne Moore and Clive Owen*

The “haunting…tender, intimate book that makes an epic interior journey” (The New York Times), Lisey’s Story is a literary masterpiece—an extraordinarily moving and haunting portrait of a marriage and its aftermath.

Lisey lost her husband Scott two years ago, after a twenty-five year marriage of profound and sometimes frightening intimacy. Scott was an award-winning, bestselling novelist and a very complicated man. Early in their relationship, before they married, Lisey knew there was a place Scott went—a place that both terrified and healed him, could eat him alive or give him the ideas he needed in order to live. Now it’s Lisey’s turn to face Scott’s demons, to go to that terrifying place known as Boo’ya Moon. What begins as a widow’s effort to sort through the papers of her celebrated husband becomes a nearly fatal journey into the darkness he inhabited.

“Intricate...exhilarating” (The New Yorker), perhaps Stephen King’s most personal and powerful novel ever, Lisey’s Story is about the wellsprings of creativity, the temptations of madness, and the secret language of love. It is a beautiful, “rich portrait of a marriage, and the complicated affection that outlives death” (The Washington Post).


  • Skyler

    While Lisey may be the narrator, this is really the story of a crazed author haunted by a tragic childhood and his visits to another dimension where he gets ideas for his best selling books. Sounds like an autobiography to me! A solid Stephen King novel for fans and newbies to the genre.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • Lindsay Bledsoe

    It took me a little while to decide, but I really loved this novel. It started out slow I guess, and I kept changing my mind about the narrator, because her voice when she was reading as Sparky Landon was grating...but in the end I suppose it was supposed to be, and I certainly never wondered which character was speaking. The story was great, if you give it a chance, and the second set of cd's are a bit better than the first.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • K.Nelson

    Wonderfully written and engaging story. Definitely recommend.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Anonymous

    Worst narrated book. Sorry I like the address but this was not a good match at all. It took me longer to finish it because I wanted to know what happened but I just didn’t want to hear her voice

  • Jamesia B.

    I enjoyed Lisey's Story. It is a good mix of creepy and emotional. King did a wonderful job of allowing the reader to really get to know and understand Lisey and her grief. He also allows the reader a window into the relationship between Lisey and her husband. The intricate language of their marriage is unique and fascinating. And the mysterious world or dimension he created is also very fascinating.

  • Anonymous

    Great book - great story! The narration was uneven - Ms. Winningham was excellent when voicing Lisey, not so much when voicing other characters.

  • Anonymous

    I decided to try to listen to this audiobook instead of reading it because it was very dull at first and it would have taken me forever. I was worried it wouldn't get better given the reviews. Well, I'm SO glad I stuck with it! It really didn't start getting good until about half way through the book, and this is no short book so half way is a while, but the last half of the book was very good! I would not classify this as a romance which I was grateful for, but it does show how deeply Lisey and her husband loved eachother. It isn't just about love. It is more about a dark past and dangers yet to come, in this reality and in others!

  • Anonymous

    Love all of Stephen King's books. This one was great, too.

  • Marcus O

    Great story, but the pauses between chapters become very inconvenient, and border on disrespectful to the listener. In fact, they ARE disruptive to the listening process. I am not sure if Mr. King intended these 35-65 second pauses to mean anything, but all they do is make me check if my player is still working. BAD BAD BAD!! It really ticked me off when I thought that the 90 second pause for the end of the chapter caused me to try to restart my book, The actual narrator is very good at delegating voices consistently, but the narration score is for the PAUSES!! Stupid, stupid move, idiots!

  • Greg Sach

    Stephen King never fails to impress with the range of his writing and producing stories that you just can't put down. Lisey's story is a great mix of a wife dealing with death of her husband and Stephen kings usual other worldly factor.

  • kimberly SCoggins

    I really enjoyed this book. Stephen King has never let me down with any of his works. His story telling ability is truly wonderful. I especially enjoy this. I thought the narrator did a good job. My only complaint is there are long pauses between chapters sometimes

  • Pamela Bischoff

    This was a very good book for me. Kept my mind occupied.

  • Kristin Barron

    This book was very compelling, but at the same time, sometimes I had to just put it on pause and do something else. It was a very intimate look at other people's pain, laid out bare, and at times it was almost too much. the journey, though, was completely satisfying.

  • Jennifer budde

    Very intense look at the lasting effects of childhood tragedy, and unconditional love. This time King details a horror that lurks at the fringes of many lives. Unfortunately, I will never be able to use my OXO can opener again...

  • Anonymous

    I've read the book before, and enjoyed it, but the audio version, with narration (by Mare Wittingham) was incredible. Really made a difference. Overall I would definitely recommend this for other King fans.....

  • Rus

    I have to admit that when I first started this book I almost sent it back a few times....It had to be one of the most difficult Stephen King books that I have had the pleasure of listening to. But once I began somewhere around chapter seven something amazing happened....The book finally started making sense. In my opinion "Lisey's Story" is probably King's best work to date. I highly recommend that anyone who is having a difficult time with the start of this book to stay with it...the journey is so worth it! The use of words in this book is so clever that I found myself even using them in my everyday life...Once the story finished I longed to know what happened next to Lisey...and still think about her each day. "Lisey's Story" is not a book for someone looking for a quick thrill or a horror story...but it was one of the most horrifying books King has written.

  • Anonymous

    Loved it. If this is an insight to how King dreams up his twisted stories, then i just want to know more.

  • JG

    I have always been a Stephen King fan. But this is the first book of his that I simply could not make it through. Incredibly boring, no plot. Just the rambling thoughts of a writer's widow.

  • Anonymous

    I loved this book. I'm a Stephen King fan but I don't always like everything he writes. Very entertaining.

  • Lilia

    Typical Stephen King, awesome story. I loved it! King shows great compassion for the less fortunate while dealing with villans in a way only he can dream up.

  • Anonymous

    This is not at all what I expected from Stephen King. The fictional horror is minimal and the relationship between the characters is complex. The story hooked me slowly, but once the hooks were in, they were in deep. Mare Winningham does a phenomenal job of creating characters with her voice and the story unwinds and knots and washes not-quite clean like the "African" that Lisey's mom knitted her as a wedding present and which follows her as an anchor at various moments of the story. It won't give you nightmares, but it gives something better. Definitely worth listening to.

  • Anonymous

    It was slow in the beginning and a bit different than other King novels that I have read, but stick with it. By the 7th cd, the story really gets going. Also, if you are married, you will completely understand the "language of marriage" that is discussed in the novel. It's a very touching story of love and loss.

  • Anonymous


  • Cindy S.

    Whether this is your first Stephen King book or your 40th I do not believe you will be disappointed. Whether King is writing about vampires, rabid dogs, evil clowns, or other worlds, he tells the story in a way that will leave you connected to the characters like they are members of the family. Lisey and Scott are no exception. Their story is wrapped around their relationship with their own special language and memories. I was a bit regretful at the end of the book because I would like to visit with Lisey again. If you have put Stephen King into a "horror box" you need to step away from your paradigm long enough to give "Lisey's Story" a listen. You won't be disappointed.

  • Robert E. Reger

    This book was possibly the worst King book that I have ever read in my life. It was long drawn out and very boring. If you must select the book, please do so in the abridged version

  • Laurajean

    Lisey’s Story was a heart-felt love story at its core, and a great one at that. The narrator performed the external and internal dialogs beautifully and probably more understandable than in writing. One oddity was that chapters would end in the middle of a sentence with a delay before the next chapter started and the sentence continued. Once this was understood it wasn’t hard acclimate. Its wordy, but worth it.

  • Anonymous

    I didn't like this book at all. I read that Stephen thought it was his best. I thought it was his worst!

  • Angelika Teal

    After reading the very mixed reviews I was uncertain as to what to expect. But I was pleasantly surprised. Even though I love the author I lost interest in his books, never made it through 'Dream Catcher' but loved the Buick 8 and Cell Story. Lisey's Story really blew me away. It was so uncharacteristic for the author, but it seemed he has outgrown the horror story author he is famous for. The story starts out slow and will turn many devoted fans away, but it really picks up and will have you glued to the CD player. The language is difficult to understand at first and sometimes plain annoying, but then it grows on you, since it is part of the book. I would not have liked it as a book, but the audio book narrator made the difficult language and writing charming, intimate and sad. I loved the characters, the story line, and the reader. I am newly re-born Stephen King fan.

  • Lynn Smoak

    What a strange mind Stephen King has. The thing is, he can take the impossible and make it sound absolutely possible. I don't think it was his best book but after the Dark Tower Story, I guess anything is a letdown. I enjoyed the book.

  • Bonnie

    I count myself among King's fans but please do not waste your time on this one. I almost stopped listening after the 2nd disc but forced myself to go on thinking that it must improve - couldn't get any worse. Finally, toward the end of the 7th disc, it picked up a little. But I really would not recommend this one to anyone.

  • Anonymous

    I've read dozens of Stephen King's books but this was by far the most fascinating one. It kept me glued to the CD player. It was read by Mare Winningham and she was wonderful. If you haven't read it or listened to the CD, do it! You won't be sorry.

  • Claudine Castillo

    Prepare yourself for flashbacks within flashbacks, repetitive character descriptions, made-up family phrases, and chapters upon chapters of introductory setup...nonetheless an captivating listen that really embodies the spirit and secret language marriages can develop. Mara Winningham does a great job of solemly telling the story. It's uncharacteristic of SK in many ways, but leaves the listener with a satisfying feeling once the last cd is played.

  • Anonymous

    The characters were tangible. I found myself anxious to get back to it ever day (listen during commute). Just great! Stephen King's imagination is amazing.

  • Susan Mitchell

    While I have been a Stephen King fan for many years, I have been less than enthusiastic about his last few books, Cell in particular was disappointing. Lisey's story, however, was captivating. More love story than anything else, it switches back and forth from past to present with the widow of a famous writer as she relives and dissects her relationship with her husband. The language is beautiful, the dark secrets of Scott Landon fascinating and the reading by Mare Winningham perfect. This ones been added to my all time favorite audiobook list.

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by Stephen King

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